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MacCentral: MyTunes Exploits ITunes Playlist Sharing

“Now that Apple is offering ITunes software and access to its music store to Windows users, the company has an opportunity to significantly increase its market share in the area of downloadable music. But the company also has to contend with applications like the recently released MyTunes, which allows Windows users to circumvent the intended use of the software by downloading music from an ITunes shared playlist over a network.

Bill Zeller, a 20-year-old Trinity College student, wrote and released MyTunes just ten days after the official release of ITunes for Windows. His Web site claims that the application is intended to enable users ‘to save music from other computers to your hard drive.’”

MacMinute: Order an iPod through UK Virgin Megastores

MacMinute reports that “Apple said Wednesday that the iPod is now available to order through all 165 Virgin Megastore and Virgin Xpress retail locations in the UK. “We’re thrilled to be working with Virgin Retail to bring the iPod to even more customers,” said Mark Rogers, Apple’s sales director and general manager for the UK and Ireland.”

Wired: ITunes Undermines Social Security

“As if it weren’t hard enough to be cool already, Apple Computer has introduced a new way for people to ruin their social standing.

Thanks to the ability of Apple’s iTunes to share music collections over local networks, it is now possible to judge someone’s taste in music—or lack of it—in a way that previously required a certain level of intimacy.”

Give your iPod that brushed steel look

iLounger Adam Podnar has done the unthinkable to his iPod… he has taken a household scouring sponge (pad) and rubbed the polished metal of his iPod until it became ‘brushed steel.’ Why did he do this? “So, you don’t like the sweaty hand on the back of an expensive MP3 player look? I don’t either. Brush the back of the iPod to make it look better I hear you say? Indeed.”

Belkin iPod Voice Recorder for $34

Dealmac: Buy.com offers the Belkin iPod Voice Recorder for $34.12, as a reader found. That’s the lowest price we’ve seen by $14. Add around $5 for shipping. The iPod Voice Recorder is a microphone/speaker combo that adds audio recording functionality to the iPod.

BillBoard: Digital tracks pose new problem for Billboard’s industry charts

“Rising sales of digital tracks through such services as iTunes Music Store and Napster are raising questions about how such transactions should be measured on the Billboard charts. [...]

‘The consumer’s rapid and enthusiastic acceptance of iTunes and other download services gives great meaning to that data,” says Geoff Mayfield, Billboard director of charts. “We will need to factor those transactions into The Billboard Hot 100 . . . .’”

Apple: Extreme Sports High School Tour

“Sponsored by action sports event coordinator ASA, a tour reaching 35 public high schools in seven major metropolitan areas provides students action-packed entertainment from extreme sports professionals and an anti-tobacco message in partnership with the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

On the sidelines of assemblies, students can see, hear and test drive iPods. In awe of how much music the iPods can store and how cool they are to use, many students are adding iPods to their wish lists.”

Forbes: Toshiba to double 1.8-inch HDD output in March

“Toshiba does not disclose the names of its 1.8-inch HDD customers, but the rise in output is expected in part to fill demand from Apple Computer Inc. for its iPod digital music player.”

Javoedge Announces JavoScreen Protector for iPods

Javoedge, makers of PDA accessories has released the JavoScreen protector for all model iPods. The JavoScreen features a non-adhesive, non-reflective, scratch-proof material which keeps your screen clean for $5.95, and includes a free cleaning cloth and instruction card.

Editor’s note: After emailing Javoedge, they informed us that the $10.95 price was a mistake. The price is $5.95 instead, and Javoedge “is deeply sorry for all of the inconvenience caused.”

Popular Science includes iTunes Music Store in “Best of What’s New”

Popular Science has included the iTunes Music Store in the Computing section of their annual “Best of What’s New” issue (December 2003), along with the Power Mac G5. Popular Science does not provide “rankings” within the category, although the Grand Prize winner in the Computing category was 802.11g, which Apple was first to commercially adopt.

The Music Industry: History Repeats Itself

Writer and blogger Tristan Louis has an interesting overview of the four stages of panic in the music industry: Ignorance, Panic, Protection and Litigation, and Quiet Acceptance. Some interesting food for thought.

“The recent fights of the music industry remind me a lot about the early days of the personal computer industry. While I was still a kid then, it seems the software industry went through a similar experience in terms of trying to figure out how to deal with piracy. In this entry, I examine what I consider to be the four stages of dealing with piracy of digital assets.

I believe that any industry that is seeing a move of their intellectual assets to a digital medium will go through four basic stages: ignorance, panic, protection and litigation, quiet acceptance. This was the case with software in the 80s and 90s, is currently the case with music, and will soon be the case with movies. I suspect that other industries like the professional photography market are facing similar issues currently or have in the past.”

MS Not Budging Over “Limitations”

But Seattle Times Columnist Paul Andrews has asked whether that’s really important…

“In follow-up queries from me, [Microsoft Windows Media GM, David] Fester refused to budge. “Apple has done a fine job building a solution, but it is a closed solution—their service, their device, their player and no one else can play in that island.”

What interests me about this case is not who’s right—both sides make legitimate points—but whether openness really matters.

Where does that leave Apple? I frankly don’t think it matters to 99 percent of consumers whether a player or service or format is open or closed. What matters is whether it works.”

Wired: Sony’s User-Friendly Copy Block

“Sony Music, home to such artists as Beyonce Knowles and Bruce Springsteen, said Monday it plans to introduce new CD technology in Germany that prevents users from copying songs to file-sharing sites, but allows them to make copies for their personal use. [...]

To copy the music to the Sony portable player, the technology requires an extra step to copy the files to a separate program to transfer the music to the portable player.

At this point, music can be transferred only to Sony portable players, although Sony executives note that Apple Computer’s popular iTunes service works the same way with the Apple-branded iPod.”

Spinning iPods

“Somewhere in East London the turntables are motionless. The only thing spinning is a chorus of iPod hard drives, or the ceiling(if you’re friends with the bartender).

The club’s name is Dreambagsjaguarshoes and the event is called noWax. The concept for noWax is simple: MP3s, not wax. iPods, not decks. On noWaxnights, mp3j’s bring their iPods and wait for the automated projector above the DJ booth to flash their number. They then plug-in and mix three songs back-to-back against another mp3j.”

How expensive is it to legally fill an iPod?

I don’t know how many other people have done the math on this one, but I was thinking about iTunes and the new iPod when I realized that to fill a 40GB iPod (legally) from iTunes would be rather expensive.  If you believe the 10,000 song capacity, it would run $9900 dollars, plus the cost of the iPod.  Assuming that an average CD album is $12.50 and has 15 tracks,  it would cost about $8,330 dollars to fill the iPod.  All this makes me wonder when a more affordable alternative is going to turn up.

30GB iPod for $419 with free cases

MacConnection is offering two separate deals on the 30GB iPod for $419; one deal with free Action Jacket silicone case by DLO and the other with a free 3-pack of iPod Skins by Speck Products.

iTunes Music Store Gift Certificates Available at Apple Store

Apple has now made available gift certificates for the iTunes Music Store through Apple Store online.  You can purchase gift certificates for any persons residing in the U.S. from $10 to $200, or you can also try your luck by entering our Happy Birthday iPod Giveaway.

TIME Names iTunes Music Store Coolest Invention of 2003

“Other inventions this year may have more altruistic intentions (like Dean Kamen’s water purifier) or be more visible on street corners (like those ubiquitous camera cell phones). But for finally finding a middle ground between the foot-dragging record labels and the free-for-all digital pirates and for creating a bandwagon onto which its competitors immediately jumped, Apple’s iTunes Music Store is Time’s Coolest Invention of 2003.”

iPods and more in Japan

Jeremy Horwitz, part of the iLounge review crew has sent in some photos of his recent travel to Japan.

“Thought you might like this

Best-Selling Author Neil Gaiman on the iSkin

“As a side comment: I loved the iSkin for the original iPod. It made the thing better: harder to scratch or to damage, harder to touch keys by accident, it made it easier to transport, and look cool. [...]

The trouble is, the new iSkins make the thing work less well. The bottom of my iSkin has now been cut off to allow it to sit in the dock of the iPod speakers. The recessed keys are harder to get to and to press properly (and the “lock” key is almost impossible to get to). The microphone-notes attachment doesn’t work with the iSkin in place.”

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